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B.C. will not ban, restrict interprovincial travel amid COVID-19

Last Updated Jan 21, 2021 at 7:54 pm PDT

FILE -- Signage on a B.C. highway urges people to avoid all non-essential travel amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Ryan Lidemark, NEWS 1130 Photo)
Summary

British Columbia will not be banning or otherwise restricting interprovincial travel, according to Premier John Horgan

Stronger restrictions are on the table, "If we see transmission increase due to interprovincial travel': Horgan

VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) — British Columbia will not be banning or otherwise restricting interprovincial travel, according to Premier John Horgan.

In a statement released Thursday, Horgan says the province sought a review of legal options in light of concerns being raised that travel was contributing to a spike in COVID-19 cases.

“The review of our legal options made it clear we can’t prevent people from travelling to British Columbia. We can impose restrictions on people travelling for non-essential purposes if they are causing harm to the health and safety of British Columbians,” the statement says.

“Much of current interprovincial travel is work-related and therefore cannot be restricted. Public health officials tell us what is most important is for everyone to obey health orders, wherever they are, rather than imposing mobility rules. Therefore, we will not be imposing travel restrictions at this time.”

RELATED: B.C. needs to stop non-essential travel to province within week, urges expert

Horgan goes on to say stronger restrictions remain on the table, “If we see transmission increase due to interprovincial travel.”

British Columbia — and the federal government — continue to advise all Canadians against non-essential travel.

“We ask all British Columbians to stay close to home while vaccines become available,” Horgan writes.

“And to all Canadians outside of B.C., we look forward to your visit to our beautiful province when we can welcome you safely.”